Gathering re Addressing NY State Budget by OccupyFaith
- This is a friendly reminder that next Wednesday, March 7th, NYC faith leaders will be gathering outside of Governor Cuomo's NYC office to protest the more than $20 million in cuts to services for the homeless in our city, money that is going directly to corporations like Goldman Sachs, American Express, Verizon, News Corp through tax loopholes. Join us as we demonstrate with "Parables of an Immoral Budget" (as so many beds have been cut out of the budget, we will be bringing our own beds to lay out on 3rd Ave.). Corporations don't need any more beds, but there are many real people who actually do. Our service of prayer, reflection, and song, will remind the Governor that all budgets are moral documents. Sign up today.
Training for ActionJoin us for an orientation/training meeting on March 6th, 10a, at Judson Memorial Church. We will go over the details for Wednesday, outline the where/what/how/why plus legal trainings for those interested in participating in civil disobedience. If interested in the training, please RSVP.
Day of ActionMarch 7th, 11:45am, at the NE corner of 39th St. & 3rd Ave. If you can join us for the action, please RSVP. (Civil disobedience NOT required to participate.)
Help boost turnoutPlease invite all members of your faith communities through your websites, internal listserves, facebook, etc. We're building up to an exciting spring for the Occupy Movement, and it is only through all of us participating that our voices will be heard.
- Facebook Event Be sure to 'attend' and invite others.
- OccupyFaithNYC beta site For more information on past actions and to sign up for future emails.
Rev. Michael Ellick
Parables of an Immoral BudgetEvery year shrouded in secrecy politicians in Albany gather behind closed doors to cut deals around how the state will spend our money. They may not like to say it but they are deciding how caring a society we want to live in, how we will treat those with plenty and those without. This year, as people of faith, we want to make the moral choices they make more visible. Governor Cuomo has proposed more than $20 million in cuts to services for the homeless in our city to services for the homeless in our city. This at a time when the need for these services is actually increasing and a record 40,000 New Yorkers are facing homelessness.
The governor, like many politicians, say we have no money and that we need to live within our means. But there is money in our state. Using loopholes, corporations that make billions in profits in our state including Goldman Sachs, American Express, Verizon, News Corp, and Travelers Insurance pay less State tax on their profits than the 4% paid by family of four making 58,000. Just closing these loopholes for corporations could give us the money to help those who find themselves homeless. Many of these corporations benefited both directly and indirectly by government's bailouts when their profits were threatened. But now that people's livelihoods are threatened, we ask the homeless for sacrifice.
Our proposed action outside the Governor's NYC office would make this hypocrisy visible. Occupy Faith clergy will demonstrate the immorality of the cuts to NYC housing needs, which are especially needed for LGBT youth in this city, by presenting the Governor with an ad hoc shelter of their very own: 5 made beds laid out in front his office at 633 3rd Ave. In addition to speaking opportunities, clergy will have the option of practicing civil disobedience by actually lying in these beds until removed by police.
Partners for this action will include our friends from IAHH (Interfaith Assembly for Hunger & Housing) and Picture the Homeless. If this action is empowering and useful for all interests involved, our second "parable" could focus on education, replacing beds with small school desks for the actual spectacle. This would happen later in March, but before "Occupy Seder/Passover." The hope will be to create actions that establish community and momentum within Occupy Faith, building our capacity as we head into the Spring..